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Who We Are

The Ohio Aerospace Institute was founded in 1989. Ohio Aerospace Institute is a joint initiative of the NASA Glenn Research Center, the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, the State of Ohio, ten Ohio public and private universities granting doctoral degrees in aerospace-related engineering disciplines, and numerous companies engaged in aerospace activities. Ohio Aerospace Institute is a 501(c) (3), not-for-profit organization.

Our Vision

To be the primary command center for all aerospace initiatives.

Our Mission

We collaborate with members in government, industry, and academia to accelerate Ohio’s aerospace workforce development through a global network of connections, educational programs, and cutting-edge information.

Our Annual Report

Although we are new members of Ohio Aerospace Institute, we are already reaping the benefits of the opportunities we’ve had to connect with key contacts in the Ohio aerospace industry. We are excited to continue to engage with Ohio Aerospace Institute in 2018 and look forward to accelerating business in Ohio.

Heather Best

Vice President,
Sales and Marketing,
Velocity Group

Building Better Businesses, One Connection at a Time

Ohio is not only the Birthplace of Aviation, but it is also one of the most robust areas in the country for the industry. In this region, you will find that giants like Boeing, NASA, and Airbus receive a great deal of equipment from Ohio-based companies.



Dr. John Sankovic

President and CEO

Dr. Sankovic comes to Ohio Aerospace Institute following a distinguished 31-year career at NASA, where he most recently served as center chief technologist and director of the Office of Technology Incubation and Innovation. There, he received numerous awards, including the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, six Agency Honor Group Achievement Awards and an R&D100 technology innovation award.

John Cotman

Chief Operating Officer

John Cotman is responsible for all non-research programs, operations, and support activities including education and internships, consortia management, small business engagement, and membership. He is currently the Treasurer of the Board of Trustees and serves on numerous nonprofit boards.

Board of Trustees

Dennis Andersh

Executive Director
Wright State Research Institute

Sarit Bhaduri

Distinguished University
Professor, MIME

The University of Toledo

Lee Ann Cochran

Amphora Consulting

Wayne V. Denny, Jr.

Director of Marketing
The Timken Company

Ali Dhinojwala

Interim Dean, College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering
H.A. Morton Professor, Polymer Science

Robert T. Dirgo

Director Strategic Innovation
Meggitt Aircraft Braking
Systems Corporation

Gail Dolman-Smith

President & CEO
Paragon TEC, Inc.

Robert X. Gao, Ph.D

Cady Staley Professor of Engineering and Chair
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Case Western Reserve University

Dennis Irwin, Ph.D., P.E., F.NSPE, OAI Board Chair

Dean Emeritus
Professor Emeritus of Electrical Engineering
Russ College of Engineering and Technology
Ohio University

Michael McKay

Manager, Early Stage Investment Funds
Office of Technology Investments
Ohio Development Services Agency

John M. Sankovic, Ph.D., P.E.

President and CEO
Ohio Aerospace Institute

Joseph Shields, Ph.D.

Vice President for Research & Creative Activity
Dean of the Graduate College
Professor of Physics & Astronomy
Ohio University

Robert Tanner

OFRN, Executive Director
Wright State Research Institute

Recent News



On Sunday, November 15 at 7:27 p.m. EST, 00:27 UTC on November 16, SpaceX and NASA launched Dragon’s first operational crew mission (Crew-1) to the International Space

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Developing Through Partnerships

There is a growing need for talent as the industry expands. Our connections in the industry, from experienced engineers to students coming into the field, offer the opportunity to find the talent you need, when you need it.

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